Thursday, August 18, 2011

Where Does It Go?

Many of you probably saw my post on Facebook and Twitter over the weekend, Cooper got light-up shoes. And let me just say, I don't know if he's ever been more excited about anything we've ever bought him. We were at the park on Sunday after church and he told a boy on the playground, that wasn't with our group and he had never met, about his shoes (and he didn't even have them on). Hilarious!

The other day, while I was making pizza, Cooper took his new shoes off and we had the following conversation:

C: "I really like my shoes."
Me: (Smiling) "I know buddy, I really like them too." (Which really isn't true because I think they're horrible. I do, however, love them for him because he is so proud and excited to have them.)
C: "You really like them?"
Me:"Yes, I like them for you, but I wouldn't like them for me to wear."
C: "Why not?"
Me: "Because grown-ups don't really like to wear light-up shoes."
C: "Why not?"
Me: "That's a good question, buddy."

I have started some version of this post several times. Generally I think about this and start writing about it just after Cooper and I have played army men, pirates, sword fight, or some other creative game that takes a lot of imagination and the willingness and/or ability to think like a kid. It always makes me wonder, "Where does all of our creativity go as we get older?"

Now I realize that not everyone loses their creativity. There are tons of creatives out there. I would be willing to bet, however, their ability to play and pretend like a kid diminishes as they get older just like us non-creative types. Don't get me wrong. I still play with Cooper and try my best to pretend. It is often a struggle for me though. I have a hard time sustaining it. I often want to try to get him to play something else. Something that doesn't force me to use my imagination. Why is that? Why are we taught, as we become adults, to stifle our imagination? To become stuffy and serious all the time.

So far it hasn't gotten easier for me. Almost every time Cooper wants to play something that is pretend I struggle. But I'm still going to try. I'm still going to play pretend games with Cooper and hope that it gets easier before he doesn't want to pretend with me any more. I hope that I don't rub my stuffy adultness off on him so that he thinks it's not fun or cool to pretend. In the meantime, I'm hoping that some of his ability to make a game or something fun out of two sticks and some dirt rubs off on me. Hopefully, as he and I get older I will become more like Rufio and less like Peter. "Bangarang, Peter!"

What was the last pretend game that you played with a child?

No comments: